How a Song can Lift the Heavy

It is a weekend of music—the kind of music that returns to me for days and shines light over the steps I walk. I don’t know anything about the lives of the people that make the music that I sing along with—those people blushing rose in the lights. They look like angels—or ghosts—to me, the way they shimmer and their voices lift up from that stage. I don’t know them or anything about them, but I know this music they make…it must be a delight to the heavens.

I remember what Kenyon Adams said when I heard him speak back in the gray of February.

The Fall makes creating a dangerous place, he said. Because of the Fall, the world is not a safe place to create…

And when he said that I felt the pull of the danger. The smoky bars. The lure of flesh and drugs and alcohol. I felt the darkness of the garden after the Fall. But he wasn’t finished speaking.

But Christ, he said. He makes it safe. You can go there, but only in Christ; only because of him. And because of him, we are not just creating as was done in the garden. Because of the fall we are re-creatingall that is broken.

I feel the pull of the re-creating in the songs that fill the stage. And the words don’t have to speak of God for Him to be in them. But when they do…oh, my. When they do, they really do.

Those are the songs that stay with me this week. My feet feel lighter when I hum the bars as I walk down the halls at work—and the man in front of me turns to look.

And I just smile. And hum some more.

I know how it is that a song can lift the heavy.

When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives…(Mark 14:26)

Tradition tells us it was probably the Hallel (Psalm 113-118) that Jesus sang with his disciples. These six Psalms are still chanted during holy days and on joyous occasions. And these are the songs he sang on the way to death?

And somehow, as we walk through Holy Week together, it makes so much sense. As I walk the halls—as my broken self holds the hands of the broken…the music is on my lips.

Because a song can lift the heavy. And take us into the Holy.


This week’s memory verse:

with the amazing Jen:

and dear Michelle too:


  1. says

    I was just commenting to my daughter this morning about how music changes the atmosphere. One way or another. A few days before this, I found myself talking to my son about how music is all about memories. Memories of a first love. Memories of where you were and who you were with. Memories of a moment with God, impressed deep in your spirit. We do, after all, put on a garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.

  2. says

    This is lovely, Laura. And you are right – the words don’t have to speak explicitly of God to radiate truth and grace. I kind of like the way the Holy Spirit shows up in hidden places. :>) Keep humming, keep remembering as we walk our way through this holiest of weeks.

  3. says

    Humming, walking, remembering. A beautiful way to move through Holy Week.

    Some songs are inhabited, you know. One of my inhabited songs is “Holy, Holy, Holy.” You?

  4. says

    Woke up this morning to the song ‘healing rain’ from Michael W Smith…it was playing in my head like a preset recorder, ‘Healing rain is coming down I’m not afraid’. So beautiful I think it is like in the psalms where God knew our spirits would be touched by the sounds ‘of music’.

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